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  • Thumbnail for The slave and the courtesan : sorcery and cultural encounters in early modern Malta
    The slave and the courtesan : sorcery and cultural encounters in early modern Malta by Bean, Owen Randall

    The present essay examines the traffic in magical goods and services between Maltese prostitutes and Muslim slaves in seventeenth-century Malta, as it is represented in the Archives of the Inquisition in Malta. Past analyses of these archives have focused on these interactions as elements of superstition and folk religion in early modern Malta. This essay asserts that the magical trade provided a form of common engagement between slaves and prostitutes as subaltern groups. In my analysis, I use close readings of denunciations before the Maltese Inquisition and historical examples from other scholarship. This essay will be useful to those interested in Maltese history, Christian and Muslim encounters, and the problems of universalism in post-colonial discourse.